The British and Irish Lions tour will be a hugely exciting time for the home nations, and whilst much of the squad will be made up of international stars, there could well be a place for an uncapped so-called bolter.
Here we take a look at five options in this department for Warren Gatland.
Darren Sweetnam (Munster)
The young Irish back three player has been astonishing this season with his blistering pace and quick feet. Sweetnam, who is quickly becoming a popular figure at Thomond Park, is just 23 years old and is keen to continue his development.
An Ireland call-up seems inevitable for the Munster man and he may be the perfect fit for a Lions bolter, with only a few options in his position performing well.
Keelan Giles (Ospreys)
Touted as Wales’ next big thing and at just 19 years old his potential is truly frightening. The winger has scored five tries in six appearances for the Wales Under-20 side so far and his Ospreys strike rate is even more frightening – scoring eight tries in just five games.
Giles was named on the bench for Wales against Japan but failed to make an appearance. This teenager has a big future and it could all start with the Lions.
Sam Underhill (Ospreys)
The Bath-bound openside looks set to earn his first England cap as soon as he sets foot in Bath’s impressive training base, Farleigh House.
Underhill is a traditional openside flanker: a scavenger, a ball-winner and on top of that he is becoming a formidable ball-carrying option for his region. The English flanker could be key component of Gatland’s back row.
4. Blair Kinghorn (Edinburgh Rugby)
Another fullback, Kinghorn has been somewhat of a revelation for the Scottish side. He has that special something, he is electric and leaves defenders clutching at thin air due to his footwork and pace.
The 20-year-old will make a serious case for inclusion on the Lions tour if his form for Edinburgh continues and he is sure to keep Stuart Hogg on his toes for Scotland in the coming years.
5. Zach Mercer (Bath Rugby)
Injuries to Taulupe Faletau and David Denton have handed the England Under-20 international a chance to impress for Bath with his handling and pace being his standout features.
He has made his mark at Bath by popping up in the wide channels and providing both width and power to open up space for Bath’s lethal wide backs. The coming man for England, the Lions will be taking notice.
Fred Blagden, Pundit Arena
Read More About: 2017 British and Irish Lions, Bath, blair kinghorn, bolter, Darren Sweetnam, denton, edinburgh, England, faletau, farleigh house, gatland, hogg, Ireland, japan, Keelan Giles, Lions, Munster, new zealand, Ospreys, Sam Underhill, Scotland, tour, uncapped, Wales, zach mercer